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How To Prepare For Winter Storm Hercules

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With a name like Hercules, the snow storm set to bear down on the Northeastern U.S. tonight and tomorrow is sure to cause some heavy damage. Inches of predicted snow fall are in the double-digits for cities from New York to Washington, D.C. (up to 18 inches), while the National Weather Service has issued blizzard warnings for Long Island and parts of lower New England. Major highways like I-87 and I-84 will close from midnight until 5 a.m. Friday. Take these tips from T+L to prepare for the first blizzard of 2014:

Be aware of flight delays by signing up for text and email alerts from FlightStats as well as your airline.

Bring adapters and chargers with you to the airport to keep all of your gadgets and mobile devices running (entertainment for your toddler means sanity for you). Travel-friendly board games and packable snacks are also smart for kids.

Use social media to follow breaking news and weather reports. Some handles to add: @WeatherChannel, @cnnbrk, @NBCnews, and any airports or airlines you'll be flying with.

Download apps like MyTSA and GateGuru to tap into user-generated information like how long you'll wait in a security line or to find an airport meal worth eating.

Consider staying put. Back-up hotel rooms can be found using HotelTonight and online travel agents (Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, Kayak, and Priceline), so you can get some shut-eye while the storm passes.

And as always, keep your patience and a good sense of humor! At least you'll be able to say you struck down Hercules when you finally arrive to your destination.

For more tips, visit our holiday travel survival guide

Photo credit: Nicolaus Czarnecki/ZUMA Press/Corbis

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